Sometimes, you might think that they’re intentionally bothering you by asking a single question tens of times or calling your cell phone indefatigably while you’re attending a crucial meeting in the headquarters of your company. You may also feel that they’re advertently aware of what they’re doing while they try to infer from the past years the details of an incident which you both equally dislike to speak about. You may get angry at them when they incessantly state a single sentence which you estimate you’ve heard three thousands times before; however, it may be difficult for you to believe that it’s not in their personality to disturb you and make you irritated at the things which you try to evade. It’s not their intention to do such a thing. They’re compulsively bound to do it. Just think of a minimum possibility that they’re suffering from OCD: Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.
The 21st century is no longer the age of diabetes, hepatitis, tuberculosis, influenza or typhoid. The communications era has brought into light a new generation of diseases which the early man was ignorantly unable to diagnose and cure.
With an iconic representation of frequent hand-washing, OCD is one of the most paralyzing mental disorders which is mainly diagnosable in the young adults older than 18. According to the U.S. Census Bureau Population Estimates by Demographic Characteristics, Approximately 2.2 million American adults aged 18 and older, or about 1.0 percent of people in this age group in a given year, have OCD.
OCD is characterized by recurrent, unwanted thoughts (obsessions) and repetitive, ritualized behaviors (compulsions). The indications of OCD are so complicated and intricate that may be conflated with those of anticipatory anxiety. The regular symptoms of OCD include, but not limited to, repeated counting, checking, washing, regulating, ordering, and asking. OCD patients are also sometimes diagnosed with the symptoms of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), bipolar disorder and social anxiety disorder.
The treatment of OCD is a very difficult and strenuous task. According to the Obsessive-Compulsive Foundation statistics, OCD patients usually go to three or four psychiatrist before receiving an accurate diagnosis and treatment.
It’s believed that the increased metabolism in caudate nucleus causes the development of OCD. Moreover, fear conditioning, which is a behavioral paradigm in which the neural organisms learn to predict aversive events, happens within the amygdala and is stored by it as an inappropriate anxious reaction. Amygdalae are a pair of small organs within the medial temporal lobes of the brain whose main task is to process emotional reactions such as anxiety reaction.
Due to the lack of public awareness about OCD, the patients usually receive violent, improper and unsuitable social reactions which contribute to the deterioration of their psychological health.
Washing hands several times a day, checking the doors for being locked while leaving the house, asking similar questions to obtain reassurance, obsessive commitment to certain rituals, anxiety for the unpredictable future and excessive desire to repeat a certain job are the primary indications of OCD.
OCD patients are extremely sensitive and perceptive. That’s why it’s believed that OCD patients are usually more intelligent and creative than the ordinary people. The father of British biology Charles Darwin is believed to have suffered from OCD.
The emergence of OCD is usually accompanied with the excess of alertness and attentiveness towards the surroundings. OCD patients immediately behold the peripheral events and show prompt reaction.
The obsessive side of OCD is the most debilitating feature of this mental illness. They attach to a certain job or person and it’s almost impossible to detach them from their mental preoccupation. For the OCD patients who are married, every simple act or statement from their spouse which may indicate unkindness and harshness would be devastating, even a simple forgetfulness in saying “good morning”. They interpret it as heartlessness from their spouse. Those who marry with the OCD patients should be completely aware that their reactions and even their undone actions may harm their spouse. In some stages of the illness, they may develop schizophrenic thoughts and visualize vicious conspiracies which are aimed at them.
OCD patients cannot forget the unfavorable events easily, so they remain in a regular, unending grapple with the unwanted thoughts which attack their mind. They’re usually afraid of an unforeseeable, troublesome and frightening future which the other people never bother thinking of.
OCD patients are extremely responsive to the behavior of their relatives and friends. Every harsh, uncalculated action may sink them in an ocean of depression and sadness. They only need benevolence and compassion and to be understood. The cure of OCD is almost impossible without proper medication and cognitive behavioral therapy.
Some of the medicines manufactured for the cure of OCD have been quite controversial and counterproductive. The most appropriate medicines prescribed for the treatment of OCD are Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors.
OCD still remains one of the most unknown mental disorders. Those who’re diagnosed with OCD should be treated as responsibly as possible. Mental disorders are far more devastating than the physical illnesses. When a man’s mind is occupied by harmful, unwanted, damaging thoughts, it’s his whole life that is paralyzed. Psychological patients only need to be understood and treated fairly. It’s all they need.